A change up…

Today I left the garage door closed, so the neighbors are thinking I’m dead.

On the weekends, I always open the garage door and begin my day before the sun has officially announced itself. In fact, I did that very thing at 6 A.M., while sipping my life sustaining brew, and gazing up into the heavens, before the birds and squirrels had ventured from their cozy nests, or the neighbors, for that matter. Justdog knew I was up, as he peered at me sleepily with one eye open, but not caring to rouse himself before I had my coffee. He’s a very smart dog.

My husband was up at 5 A.M, going over to the coast to fish with a friend, so the house was empty, well, except for Justdog and Justcat…. and JustI, of course.

The world is mine!

I finished my second cup of coffee, and took Justdog for his morning constitutional before daybreak. The air was crisp, and there was a gentle breeze, but winter is basically over in Florida, so I only had on two layers of clothes, and no winter jacket, for a change.

Walking the dog stirred my appetite, so when we got back I decided to forego another cup of coffee, and go inside to fix myself a hearty breakfast. The sun wasn’t quite up yet, so I closed the garage door, with just a crack for Justcat, so he could come and go, and sit in the sun on the front porch.

I had no sooner finished breakfast and started up the computer, when I heard my 75 year old neighbor’s garage door open. I know the squeak and squeal of each garage door on our cul de sac. From the window in my office, I spied the neighbor walking the lid to my trash bin over to my house. I loaned her the trash bin for her yard waste about a month ago, and she returned the bin, but forgot to return the lid. I see her frequently, but forget to bring the lid home. Obviously, not all that important.

My first thought was, what the heck is she doing up so early. She usually sleeps in ’til 9 or 10 A.M.

Then I realized I had left my garage door mostly down, and she was looking for signs of life. She thinks I’m on my death bed, or that I’ve croaked.

On our cul de sac, an open garage door is a sign of life or a welcome mat for the neighbors, and I have inadvertently sent a signal to all that something is awry. I may as well have hung a quarantine sign on the front door.

I’m thinking I better go open up the garage, to ease everyone’s minds. I’ll be hearing about my faux pas for the better part of next week, as each and every one will ask about my health, seeing as I did a change-up.

Me thinks I will feign a quick recovery.





The wake

Some wakes celebrate the life of someone who has passed, but in the wake of Irma, we celebrate the demise of one who wreaked devastation.

I read someone’s post earlier this week (posted under “humor”) about why anyone would want to live in Florida, a hurricane magnet, and live in fear of the loss of life, or destruction of one’s home. We have tornados too, so I guess we have two strikes against us. We have no basements. We’re only about 100 feet above sea level.

I was born here, and I still live here.

At least with hurricanes, we can prepare in advance, so I won’t be moving to Kansas any time soon. Prepare is the most important word in that sentence. When hurricane season begins, you begin to prepare. It’s an Aesop fable I learned as a child, The Ant and the Grasshopper. Those who live on the coast, must be prepared to leave. Although the storm tracked up the gulf, the backlash was felt even on the east coast because it spawned tornados. The weather radio compared Irma to the size of Ohio. I can’t say I’ve ever been there, but it was interesting here, for sure.

Central Florida, Orlando specifically, is on the same latitudinal line as NASA. I don’t think NASA built there without giving it some thought, and I’m happy to share in their reasoning, even if I don’t know what it is.

Plus Disney World is here (NASA Theory), and tourists. I marvel at people who save a boat load of money to bring their family here during the summer, when temperatures are 95 plus degrees, and heat indexes are well above 100 degrees. But, I’m one to talk; I love visiting the frozen northland during winter.

We were without power for almost 3 days, and as soon as our power was restored I lowered the thermostat on the AC to see if I could get it to snow in the house.

Everyone I know has two refrigerators. One in the house, like the rest of the country, and one in their garage for ice and water, and other libations. We stocked up on ice and water early. We went through 60lbs of ice before our power came back on. I shared water and cooked on the grill (everything that I could before we lost it) for our neighbors that rode out the storm. I had placed the grill in our garage to weather the storm. It’s easy to roll the grill out in the driveway.

I know you don’t think I was grilling in the garage.

I’ve had a camp-style coffee pot for years. There wasn’t a day I missed my coffee. I do have some priorities.

After 3 days of no power, everyone in our neighborhood lost all of the food in their refrigerators, so we will clean them out and start anew.

We lost one tree, and have raked a load of leaves and picked up limbs until my sweaty back hurts.

Even as I am doing a ton of laundry and sweaty bed linens, I know how fortunate we are, and I pray for those who are still dealing with the wake of Irma. I’m not sure that fortunate is the appropriate word. I prayed to God for our safety and the safety of all those in her path. I do think prayers are answered. It’s all about faith.





Life on the cul de sac

The husband left the house at 5:00 AM, this morning to go fishing with a friend. Last night I threatened him with bodily harm if he woke me up, so I was actually able to sleep in until 7:00. After I had my first cup of coffee, fed and walked the dog, I settled in my office with more coffee to read the news online and check out new blog posts, etc.

The office is at the front of the house, and there is a big window that lets in a lot of sunlight, so the office is always bright and toasty in the mornings. While I’m reading about a father and son who bagged a 700 lb wild hog in North Carolina, I hear voices coming from out front of the house. When I look out the window, I see my 70 year old neighbors romping around their front yard. Anything is possible on our cul de sac.

There are 7 houses on the cul de sac (I’m #7), and we all know each other and hang out together, you know, like barbeques and fire pit gatherings, or an occasional beer on the front porch type of thing. Well, house #6 are the Hindu’s, and they are a nice couple, but I think we’re too rowdy for them, so we don’t see them much, and the guy that lives in #1 (with his cats) is in witness protection or a vampire. He puts his garbage and recycle bins out (and in) under the cover of darkness. We know he’s alive, but we NEVER see him. The romping 70 year olds are in #2, and they don’t hang out with #5 anymore unless it’s a large gathering; a little bit of tension there. My husband says it’s because #5’s wife is too candid and he thinks I should take note and become a little nicer. I interpret that as being disingenuous, but my husband says that being nicer means bite my tongue more often than not. Hey, I get along with all of the neighbors, so I must not be ALL bad. That’s another story…anyway.

Curiosity got the better of me, so I grabbed my coffee and nonchalantly walked out on my front porch to see what all the romping was about. Well, it seems that “Greased Lightening” got out again. Greased lightening (GL) is my name for their new tea cup yorkie puppy. He weighs in at 2 lbs (1 kilo) and when they open the door leading into their garage, GL comes out of the shoot like a race horse. Most of us on the cul de sac leave our garage doors open, kind of like a welcome mat, so the puppy has become an escape artist. Now, the #2 wife has diabetic neuropathy and can’t feel her feet anymore, and #2 husband has a bad knee which gives out on him occasionally. So I hold my breath while watching them try to corral the puppy.

"Greased Lightening"
“Greased Lightening” (not my picture)

One evening, #5’s wife, returned GL after she saw something scurrying around in their garage. It seems #2’s husband went out to throw something in the garage recycle bin, and never saw GL make his great escape. When #5’s wife knocked on their door and handed over GL, she said she was returning their hamster (see, candid). #2 wife told #5 wife that she couldn’t imagine how GL got out, “we were just watching him”. #5 wife said, “obviously not, he was in the front yard”.

#7 (me) heard this story from #5 & #2 on separate occasions. I was telling my husband about it, and he said he hoped I was nice. I am ALWAYS nice, geesh 🙄


Let sleeping dogs lie…

After 3 days of traveling to the Ocala Dog Show (about 90 mins northwest of us), the puppy is still in recovery mode.


Pooped out Puppy...it's rough being a show dog!
Pooped out Puppy…it’s rough being a show dog!

I had planned to take him to doggy daycare today so he could get some exercise and play in the mud, but he didn’t look up to it. Plus, the weather here is yucky. It rained almost all day yesterday, and today it’s cold and blustery. The temps are in the 40s, but we have a wind chill advisory from 11:00 am to 11:00 pm, with 15-20 mph winds. Personally, I think it looks like snow.

I took the show puppy up to Ocala on Thursday, last week, and he was his usual excited self. We didn’t show until 1:30 pm, so he got his nap and was full of himself. Saturday, my husband went with us, and we were up at 4:00 am, with a 9:30 am, show time. It was 43 degrees in Ocala, and my husband was wearing shorts and a T-shirt…..Brrrrrrrrr. The Ocala Dog Show is outside, so there isn’t any escaping the chill. Luckily, it warmed up for the Sunday show.

Show puppy with his breeder/handler
Show puppy with his breeder/handler


Next month, we get to show in Orlando, thank goodness!

Ocala Dog Show_0262
Bragging rights!




Double, double toil and trouble…

Act 4, SCENE I. A cavern. In the middle, a boiling cauldron.
Thunder. Enter the three Witches

First Witch
Thrice the brinded cat hath mew’d.

Second Witch
Thrice and once the hedge-pig whined.

Third Witch
Harpier cries ‘Tis time, ’tis time.
First Witch
Round about the cauldron go;
In the poison’d entrails throw.
Toad, that under cold stone
Days and nights has thirty-one
Swelter’d venom sleeping got,
Boil thou first i’ the charmed pot.


Double, double toil and trouble;
Fire burn, and cauldron bubble.

Second Witch
Fillet of a fenny snake,
In the cauldron boil and bake;
Eye of newt and toe of frog,
Wool of bat and tongue of dog,
Adder’s fork and blind-worm’s sting,
Lizard’s leg and owlet’s wing,
For a charm of powerful trouble,
Like a hell-broth boil and bubble.

eye of newt

Double, double toil and trouble;
Fire burn and cauldron bubble.

Third Witch
Scale of dragon, tooth of wolf,
Witches’ mummy, maw and gulf
Of the ravin’d salt-sea shark,
Root of hemlock digg’d i’ the dark,
Liver of blaspheming Jew,
Gall of goat, and slips of yew
Silver’d in the moon’s eclipse,
Nose of Turk and Tartar’s lips,
Finger of birth-strangled babe
Ditch-deliver’d by a drab,
Make the gruel thick and slab:
Add thereto a tiger’s chaudron,
For the ingredients of our cauldron.

Double, double toil and trouble;
Fire burn and cauldron bubble.

Second Witch
Cool it with a baboon’s blood,
Then the charm is firm and good.